A Look At How The Top 100 Credit Unions Finished 2004

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The nation's 100 largest credit unions now serve approximately 25% of all CU members, according to analysis of year-end data.

Callahan & Associates said the top 100 serve 20.7 million members, an increase of 5% from 2003. Overall, approximately 84 million members are served by 9,206 credit unions.

"The primary reason for the continued growth is the credit unions' ability to provide superior member value as demonstrated by the 8.3% share growth and 14% loan growth," said Callahans. "Both numbers are about 50% higher than the overall credit union industry averages of 5.2% in shares and 10.1% in loans."

The 8.3% increase in share growth was led by share drafts at 12.3% and certificates at 13.4%. Individually, members at the top 100 credit unions keep an average of almost $9,000 in share balances and $11,800 in loans.

"Superior value is the key to every credit union's success," said Jay Johnson, executive vice president at Callahan. "There were new challenges in 2004. Growth across the board is slowing, but opportunities to serve are increasing daily. These industry leaders show the potential that exists for every credit union."

The average credit union in the top 100 has $2.2 billion in assets. Navy Federal Credit Union, Vienna, Va., continues to be the nation's largest at $22.9 billion.

The top 100 credit unions hold a total of $217 billion in assets including $143 billion in loans and $66 billion in investments. First and second mortgages comprise 52% of the loan portfolio followed by new and used autos with 33%. Earnings for the group declined just under 1% to $2.3 billion. However, total net worth of $22 billion resulted in a slight increase in the capital ratio to 10.1% from the prior year-end.

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